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What Is Scrap Metal and why are they worth so much?

What Is Scrap Metal?


Scrap metal consists of any waste metal or metallic material, in general any material that has metal as part or whole of its component. The more known forms of scrap metal are iron, steel, aluminium, and lead, just to name a few. Scrap metal could come from anywhere, commercially or residentially. Some of the more common examples include old vehicles or even their parts, building supplies, and even everyday objects.

Below is an exhaustive list of metals and where you can find them.

Scrap metal aluminium is can be found in soda cans, wrap foils and wiring. Most air condition and mobile uses aluminium for its wiring.

Scrap metal brass is most commonly found in musical instruments, metal kitchenware, bronze medals, and metal decorative pieces. Brass can also be occasionally found in wiring.

Scrap metal carbide are usually found in metal tools, even in the tool parts such as nails and add-ons onto drills.

The most common scrap metal cobalt is found in batteries. Also found in magnets and alloyed scraps.

The most common scrap metal cobalt is found in batteries. Also found in magnets and alloyed scraps.

Gold is considered a precious metal and is valued highly. Gold can be sold to scrap metal companies for money, but usually if you need the money, you will just take it to a pawn shop. If you however are still up for the challenge, you can find scrap metal gold in cell phones, vehicle heat insulators, sometimes even embroidery on clothing. Do not forget about your jewellery and jewellery boxes.

Scrap metal iron is most commonly found in railings, however please do not start cutting up public railings and selling them to scrap metal companies. There are also other sources of scrap metal iron, including, iron pans, patio furniture (outdoor/garden furniture) and lawn mowers.

When it comes to lead I am sure the first to mind is pencil lead. Sadly to say, lead mixed with wood is extremely hard to recycle and thus not accepted as scrap metal. Other source of scrap metal lead includes vehicle batteries and also lead wheel weights. An important point to note is to handle lead with precaution, as they are highly toxic.

Scrap metal nickel can be found in some coins, also rechargeable batteries and electric guitar strings.

Similar to gold, silver is considered a precious metal and is highly valued. The content of coins made long ago (about 50 years), are filled with almost 90% silver. However you can still find them in jewellery, tableware and utensils.

Steel is one of the most used scrap metal in the industry. Most of your kitchen appliances and tools are scrap metal steel. Many times, when one renovates their kitchen, they keep their old equipments with stainless steel contents and bring them to a scrap metal company to earn some quick cash. Keep a lookout if the steel is magnetic as they garner a lower price compared to those non-magnetic.

Scrap metal titanium is also one of the top used metals; they are used for almost everything because it is very light and still able to withstand huge pressure. Scrap metal titanium is mainly retrieved from components of engines, aeroplanes and satellites.

Fun fact: Recycled titanium is used to replace human tissue and bone, mainly due to their light weight.

Tungsten is a scrap metal that can withstand the most heat, causing them to be very effective in high heat environments. They are used as a component in light bulbs and heavy machinery. You can find scrap metal tungsten in razorblades and ballpoint pens.

Why is Scrap Metal worth so much?

The main importance of scrap metal is that it can be recycled, causing them to hold a very high monetary value. Why does its ability to be recycled drive their monetary value so high? Imagine your metallic house key having been a key for a hundred-other people in the past, just a small piece of metal could be reused infinitely and for so many different purposes. To put things into perspective, that example was just for a single key, now using that theory, apply it to the huge beams of metal construction industry uses. And that is only one portion of metal uses, as you have read above, the uses of metal are close to infinite and some of these are irreplaceable (for now, never know what the possibilities in the future are), such as aeroplanes and machinery. These scrap metal holds the capability to be used over and over again, and some for very important purposes, e.g. construction.

It is important to learn about scrap metal because of three main reasons.

  • They can be recycled, and for a huge variety of uses
  • You are helping the world becoming a better place
  • And of course, you get paid for recycling them

Hope this article has helped you understand scrap metal better. We will be writing more articles so stay tuned!

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